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Milking a cow that does not want to be milked
March 14, 2012
4:53 pm
lizzie
Grass Valley
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September 20, 2010
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I was wondering if anyone has any advice on making it easier to milk a cow that is not used to being milked.  The hubby and I milk a cow once a week for free milk, the cow we are used to is going to calf soon, so they have stopped milking her, onto the new cow a little Jersey, she really is sweet, its just that she is not used to being milked and likes to kick, plus two of her utters are in the way back which makes it hard to get the milking machine attached, last Monday morning was our first milking with her, and thank goodness we had help, once she got hooked up things went just fine, but it was the hooking up the milking machine that was the problem.  So just wondering if anyone has any hints, or tips on making this easier on the little Jersey and us.  sleepy-cow

March 14, 2012
5:38 pm
BuckeyeGirl
N.E. Ohio
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February 10, 2009
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Hobbles. Some people scream cruelty, but the stress of the struggle, the time it takes and the danger to you makes it smart and healthier in the long run. You put them on her and be very gentle and careful while milking, and unless the cow is insane, (which some are) she won't need them for long. If she's mostly a nice cow as you say, you probably won't need them very long

There are fairly inexpensive or you can try putting a strap up above her hocks, not too tight!!!

Located in N.E. Ohio
March 14, 2012
5:54 pm
Ross
Bel Air Maryland
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we had a cow that would only allow you to milk her if she had a feed bucket with grain in it. When it was empty you were through! We would put a smooth round stone in the bucket about half the size of the buttom and she would work around that. It took her longer to lick the grain from around the stone than it took me to finish hand milking her. I had to be ready to move when her head came up.

March 15, 2012
1:10 am
Flatlander
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February 8, 2009
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If she is a sweet cow it wont take long for her to get used to being milked, give her something to eat…hook her up on the machine (good luck) and when the machine is running, pet her and talk to her.

March 15, 2012
10:42 am
Ross
Bel Air Maryland
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Cows need to be milked twice each day. Who is doing the other milkings? Are there fourteen different people trying to milk the same cow? You as a milker are a sorrogate calf and a cow won't allow a calf other than her own to nurse. She doesn't know you.

March 15, 2012
11:14 am
LK
Mighty Chicken
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March 3, 2010
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Ross, we figured out how to combat that greed factor. We fed the cow first, and when she was done, we milked. This has worked well for our cow and we will always train them to be this way. We found that as much as they associate chop with milking time, they won't have a fit if they don't get more.

I remember that when I was growing up, we had one cow that would demand, and demand, hold back milk, kick and the whole shebang. She was good other than that. I learned to milk her quickly. It never took her long to eat her chop. What a big piggy she was!

Instead of hobbles, another trick that was used long ago (and some of my relatives still use it), is getting someone to crank the tail up around (not straight up) over the back as much as they can. Make sure that It takes a lot of effort (at least for me), but it works well. A few times of this, and she shouldn't kick anymore. They can't kick while this is going on, and figure out that it just isn't worth fighting it after a while.

Yes, petting is good too. I have read that it makes them happier, more relaxed, and they will give more milk. I always said sweet things to the cows when milking them….except when they were bad…then they knew…like stepping on my foot. OUCH!

March 15, 2012
1:59 pm
lizzie
Grass Valley
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September 20, 2010
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Ross she is milked twice a day by the owners of the cow and a few other people, I think there is a total of 10 people that help with the milking, maybe this is the problem?  Noel is brought into the barn where she eat's her grain and fodder which she loves during milking, I do brush her and talk very softly to her while the milking is going on.  We have tried the tail method, hubby almost got pooped on, this was quite funny, although not for the hubby.  I am just hoping that she get's used to being milked, this is not our cow and we do this for the milk, but it sure would not be worth it to be kicked in the head or injured while milking.  Noel loves to come into the barn and is easy to handle, she just does not like to be milked.  Thank you for all the great advice! I will pass it on.moo

March 15, 2012
2:45 pm
LK
Mighty Chicken
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March 3, 2010
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Often the cow has a preference in who does the milking by hand. I imagine this would be no different for who puts on a machine. My aunt says that most cows prefer women, but I find that they like to get used to their one person, maybe two. Often, they will moo softly at the milker as if it were their calf. I have had this happen, and my husband gets sweet nothings mooed at him when he goes to milk our cow. lol It might be that there are too many "calves" to feed and you are all driving her crazy! That is what my kids do to me somedays, so I imagine it would not be too different for her. lol

March 15, 2012
3:13 pm
Ross
Bel Air Maryland
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The stone in the bucket slowed her down. It also works with kids that eat too fast,leave their meat on the bone.

March 15, 2012
8:36 pm
bonita
north east IL
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May 31, 2010
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Ross, you slay me!

Save the Earth. It's the only planet with chocolate.

March 15, 2012
10:04 pm
lizzie
Grass Valley
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Going out right now to look for a big stone!laugh

March 17, 2012
9:30 am
holstein woman
Yankton, (St. Helens)Oregon
Mighty Chicken
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December 8, 2010
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When I had a kicker, I put the machine on and talked to her nicely and when she kicked I put my hand up and stopped her. I always told her DON'T KICK. She got better and mostly stopped. I say mostly because I got her because she had a dislocated hoof on her back right side.  got her from a local dairy who didn't want to work with her while she healed. She was a "Very Good Jersey Cow"!sleepy-cow

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